In today’s post we will go back to ancient Greece and examine a very interesting symbol that is familiar to people of pagan faith and/or are involved in witchcraft. Here is everything you should know about the symbol that is called the Hecate’s wheel, its meaning, symbolism, origin and uses.
The Origin of the Hecate’s Wheel Symbol
Hecate’s wheel, also known as the Strophalos of Hecate, is a symbol featuring a central six-sided star surrounded by a circle, a “triple-sided” labyrinth, and an outer circle. The earliest depictions of the wheel are from the 1st century CE, and they appear alongside the goddess Hecate who is the ancient Greek lunar goddess.
Also known as Diana Lucifera, the goddess is known to be linked with magic, witchcraft, necromancy, sorcery, and the knowledge of herbal properties. The goddess also has dominion over the sky, earth, and sea, which align with her association with the trinity.
Earlier depictions of the goddess feature her as a solitary figure, but later versions from around the 5th century BCE show her in triple form ranging from having three separate bodies to one body with three faces.
Therefore, the goddess is associated with womanhood and the three phases of life in females. The ancient triple moon goddess is a trinity of different aspects of femininity, namely, the maiden, the mother, and the crone, which also symbolize the three phases of the moon – waxing, waning, and full moon. The aspect of the trinity is also visible in the labyrinth section of the symbol.
Hecate’s Wheel Meaning And Symbolism
On the surface, the shape has a meaning associated with each tier of the design, and overall it is a symbol for transmitting knowledge and energy through divine forces.
The symbol is associated with the Chaldean Oracles through the iynges, which are a part of the shape. The Chaldean Oracles refer to a Neoplatonic metaphysical view that assumes the universe is created by an omnipotent and omniscient Father who possesses divine intellect and is the primary source of all knowledge in the cosmos.
The Father oversees his emissaries who are charged with relaying the intellect to the material world, and Hecate is considered responsible for transmitting this information to humans in a form they can comprehend and benefit from. Each layer of the symbol has a separate meaning ascribed to it, such as:
The central star represents the all-knowing Father who is the source of all intellect in the universe, and the six-sided star signifies the divine spark in our soul that links us to the divine and mortal planes.
The Inner Circle
The first circle represents the goddess Hecate as a gatekeeper of divine information responsible for disseminating the information to the mortal world by acting as a reflection of the First Father’s divinity.
The labyrinth refers to the stages of life that every individual navigates while also learning about their spark before the soul returns to the First Father. The labyrinth is also a loop that shows the continuation of this cycle and how it is the same for every individual in the material world. The three stages include:
Life: In this stage, our immortal soul is bound to human flesh to become a physical manifestation.
Death: This is this stage where our mortal bodies are separated from our immortal souls, which ascend and return to the divine plane.
Rebirth: In this stage, it is possible for the soul to achieve a superior state of enlightenment which can manifest in the form of a second life in the material world or when the soul goes back to the Father.
The Outer Circle
The second circle represents the limits of the goddess Hecate in terms of what energy she can use to manifest the information and knowledge passed down by the divine Father to humans.
The area enclosed between the first and second circles is the space between the material and intellectual worlds, which the goddess can utilize to fulfill her purpose.
The symbol is also associated with rebirth and renewal as the shape is linked with a labyrinthine serpent circling an iynges spiral.
The serpent has multiple meanings in ancient Greek tradition as the snake was the symbol used on the staves of Hermes and Asclepius, who are associated with healing and medicine.
The serpent has also been featured in depictions of the goddess Hecate along with keys, torches, and daggers. The serpent is also a symbol of rebirth and fertility as there is a Greek myth that believes all creation originated from the incubation of an egg by a giant serpent.
Snakes are associated with rebirth as they shed their skin and emerge with rejuvenated and renewed skin that symbolizes them being reborn in their own way.
The iynges spiral is a symbol used to transmit divine information from gods to humans as it was used to perform rituals such as the whirling of the iynx-wheel, which produces a sound that attracts the goddess Hecate who assists with the ascension of their souls.
The iynges are linked with divine rituals that attract the attention of God and can be used for magic. The whirling dance imitates the sound and movement of the iynges, which are magical tools and mediums associated with divine thought and intervention.
The Uses of Hecate’s Wheel Symbol
Hecate’s wheel was used primarily to invoke the goddess and her power. The goddess is a symbol of feminine energy as it is associated with the energy of the moon and three forms of womanhood, which makes it suitable to invoke her blessing at any stage of life.
The symbol reflects divine knowledge and represents our soul’s journey in attaining it by navigating the maze and complexities along our way guided by the goddess Hecate to reach the center of the wheel and complete the process to achieve spiritual enlightenment.
In the modern era, the symbol is used for religious worship by practitioners of Hellenic Reconstructionism, a neopagan religious movement based on traditional forms of worship in ancient Greece, and Dianic Traditions of Wicca, a modern pagan religion focused on feminine goddesses and their rituals and traditions.
The symbol can be worn in the form of jewelry or totems as they are said to guide prosperity into our lives by forming a connection with the goddess Hecate.
This wraps up our post on Hecate’s wheel, its meaning, origin and uses. If you liked it, you should probably check out our posts on pagan symbols and their meanings here and Greek god symbols here. Thanks for reading on Symbols and Meanings.